Let’s face it. When you tell a friend you are involved with social media marketing (SMM), the initial thought they eventually blurt out is, “So, you only post social media status updates right? That must be a real easy job to do!” It has become one of the most common and annoying myths that follows social media marketers almost everywhere. SMM is not all about posting updates on Facebook and Twitter. There’s far more planning and processes involved with it. Businesses, from the smallest to the biggest, can become more successful and profitable through social media.
Engaging customers through different social media platforms improves social signals, creates brand awareness, improves audience reach and increases customer loyalty. With so many advantages, let’s take a look at the strategies and techniques used in SMM besides posting social media status updates.
1. Build a team.
Social media marketing are most effective when there is a cross-functional team to create strategies and plans and implement it. Discuss with the executive team (management, creatives, content writers, social media managers) what kind of posts should be published on the social media accounts, how often should they post and what goals they should achieve with their strategies. Having a creative team to bounce off ideas and collaborate with is a great way to start a SMM campaign.
2. Listen and respond accordingly.
Managing accounts does not end after social media updates have been posted. Fans or followers will hit the “Like” button, leave comments, share or retweet posts, which they find interesting, agreeable or informative. Read the comments and see what type of posts get the most likes or shares. Engage the audience through conversations done on a positive note and with the proper brand voice. Communication is key with SMM. When a visitor leaves a question or inquiry on a social media channel, they expect to receive a response. SMM cultivates loyalty and trust when social media managers immediately respond and address their comments.
3. Be familiar with all social media channels.
Facebook is not the only social media platform utilized in SMM. There’s Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn and the list of platforms grows longer as time passes. Social media is expanding rapidly and in SMM, you need to know and understand each platform – what their advantages are to your campaign, how to use them and what kind of users each one has. For example, Instagram users are big on engaging visual content while Twitter users prefer short form content with a limit of 140 characters. The demographic on each channel differs so the published content needs to be tailor fit for each one.
4. Evaluate the effectiveness of the SMM
Is your SMM strategy actually working? Before you even start with a SMM campaign, identify the key measures in evaluating the progress or decline of your social media strategy. Tracking can be time-consuming when there are a lot of metrics needed to be assessed. Free tools are available online to help with checking social media stats like Hootsuite, SproutSocial, bit.ly and Google Analytics. Social media marketers usually focus on follower growth, reach, pageviews, and engagement.
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